Ariel Red Hunter

ARIEL RED HUNTER BACKGROUND
The 1930s were indeed the Golden Age for the British motorcycle industry. At the time, nearly all of them relied heavily on one basic engine architecture: the air-cooled, pushrod OHV single, and most marques had built their lineup of 350 and 500 singles. As the 1930s opened, Ariel’s product line was a bewildering array of side-valve and pushrod 250s, 350s, 500s and 557cc singles, some with vertical cylinders other slanted forward, with both 2 valves and 4 valves. When legendary engine designer Val Page left Ariel to join upstart Triumph, he was replaced by the also legendary Edward Turner, who had just designed the Square Four for Ariel, and would ultimately leave Ariel for Triumph himself, where he would create is masterpiece, the Triumph Speed Twin in 1938. But for now, just having been named Ariel’s Design Chief, Turner set about rationalizing and simplifying Ariel’s line of singles. As the result, for the 1933 model year, Ariel built just three OHV singles, each in three trim levels. The top of the line was the 500cc VH Red Hunter. Of course, World War II intervened, ending civilian production in 1939. It wasn’t until 1946 that civilian production resumed, and the Ariel Red Hunter, along with just about every other British motorcycle at the time, was largely carried over from its pre-war design, with changes made after that.
ARIEL RED HUNTER ENGINE DESIGN
The Ariel Red Hunter’s 500cc engine used a cast iron cylinder and head with 2 overhead valves per cylinder. The crankcase was made of aluminum alloy and split vertically, carrying a built-up crankshaft in two large main bearings. Lubrication was by plunger-type pump and was dry sump with a separate oil tank. The 1949 Ariel Red Hunter could be ordered with either one or two exhaust ports, with either high or low exhaust pipes.


Ariel Red Hunter YEAR-BY-YEAR


1939 ARIEL RED HUNTER

250cc, 350cc & 500cc air-cooled OHV singles w/rigid frames & springer front forks.


1947 ARIEL RED HUNTER

We shot this gorgeous bike at our photo booth at Clubman 2011. Killer pics!


1948 ARIEL RED HUNTER

250cc, 350cc & 500cc air-cooled OHV singles w/rigid frames & springer front forks.


1949 ARIEL RED HUNTER

250cc, 350cc & 500cc air-cooled OHV singles w/rigid frames & telescopic front forks.


1954 ARIEL RED HUNTER

250cc, 350cc & 500cc air-cooled OHV singles w/swing-arm & telescopic front forks.


1955 RED HUNTER
500cc OHV single

1957 ARIEL RED HUNTER

250cc, 350cc & 500cc air-cooled OHV singles w/rigid frames & telescopic front forks.



Check out these ARIEL BOOKS





Ariel: The Complete Story (Crowood Motoclassics)



Ariel Square Four 1948 Limited Edition Extra 1959



Ariel Square 4 (Super Profile)



The Modern Ariel Motor Cycle - 1939-47 Owners' Guide Single Cylinder Models



Ariel Motorcycles Workshop Manual 1933-1951



Book of the Ariel Leader and Arrow 1958-1966



115MPH ARIEL Motorcycle Conversion Article.: Motorcycle Mechanics March 1966.



Aurora to Ariel: The Motorcycling Exploits of J.Graham Oates, Pioneer Motorcyclist



BOOK OF THE ARIEL 4 STROKE SINGLES 1939-1960



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Last updated 3/10/18

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